SalesTechStar Interview with Michael Ouliel, CEO at BlackSwan Technologies
For any tech product innovator, emerging from stealth is one part of the story, emerging successfully ensures a different tactic and ball game; Michael Ouliel, CEO at BlackSwan Technologies shares his experience and learnings in this chat:
Hi Michael, welcome to SalesTechStar! Tell us about your journey through the years…and the BlackSwan platform?
Thank you for having me! My professional journey has included stints working for Oracle, Palantir and IBM Watson. Working with so many of the world’s leading enterprise tech companies gave me key insight into both the strengths that have allowed these companies to develop their prestige and influence, as well as the weaknesses that have limited them.
I also worked for many years in intelligence, which is what initially inspired me to create BlackSwan. I realized, during that time, how critical it is for both corporate and government entities to be absolutely rigorous in the acquisition and analysis of data, which can play a critical role in informing do-or-die decisions.
ELEMENT, the cloud-based AI operating system that we have developed at BlackSwan, allows enterprises to harness the full potential of data in order to make the most intelligent decisions to drive their growth and mitigate risk. ELEMENT is more user-friendly, adaptive and scalable than any existing offering.
Companies across industries use ELEMENT to help grow their businesses, including by enabling more intelligent interactions with existing and potential new customers. For example, we recently worked with a top-10 global bank to help them identify new clients. They had been struggling with low growth rates for a while, but thanks to ELEMENT, are now able to quickly identify and reach out to new customers. We also recently helped a large credit card company improve marketing to existing customers by using AI to reveal customer patterns and insights. This has created more personalized customer interactions and driven higher sales for the company.
What was 2020 like for the team and company: can you share your key takeaways and learnings that will drive 2021 processes and plans?
One thing that has always been part of our mentality as a company, which has been at the forefront of 2020, is the idea of remote work. By ensuring secure remote access to company systems, global enterprises are able to remove the artificial barriers that have so often limited their efficiency and the quality of talent that they are able to attract.
We are hiring new employees across the globe who are able to receive training and work remotely. Our newly launched Digital University also allows our partners to be onboarded virtually with tailored online learning programs. In addition, we have helped many of our customers effectively adapt to remote work by making digital transformation accessible and efficient. Enabling this sort of flexibility for our customers, as well as our employees, will certainly be a major element of our 2021 goals as well.
BlackSwan Technologies has seen immense growth shortly after emerging from stealth, can you talk about a few plans and strategies that helped drive this?
I think that we have seen such rapid growth since our launch from stealth because what we are offering is truly unique in the industry. Our platform, unlike others, allows enterprises to harness the most advanced AI and digitally transform their operations, without requiring massive amounts of historic data sets, countless hours of data normalization or technical in-house expertise to implement.
We have also established partnerships with some of the world’s leading consultancies and management firms, such as Deloitte, which have significantly expanded the reach of our technology. By training our partners to build, implement and sell the ELEMENT platform, they have been able to successfully deliver our technology to many of their diverse clients.
Can you talk about the biggest innovations in enterprise AI applications that you’ve followed in the last few years?
I believe that the innovations bringing enterprise AI apps to new heights today are those that take the AI technologies that we are familiar with, like machine learning, and taking them a step further in order to achieve a level of augmented human intelligence that has never been seen before.
Our AI operating system, ELEMENT, combines AI techniques including machine/deep learning, NLP, contextual analytics, cognitive computing and knowledge graphs into one platform, allowing our technology to mimic human thought processes and drive truly intelligent decision making within an enterprise.
Your take on the future of AI enterprise apps and how you feel demand for this market will shape up?
I’m confident that we are going to see market demand explode in the next few years, as new technologies enable more rapid ROI for companies investing in AI, and the gap begins to noticeably widen between those companies that have implemented advanced AI technologies and their peers who have not. In many industries, I believe it may reach a sink-or-swim point where AI adoption becomes a necessity if you want to compete and continue to see long-term growth.
We’d love to hear about some of BlackSwan Technologies biggest plans and initiatives for 2021?
We’ve got some really exciting new partnerships and product releases that we’ll be unveiling over the course of Q1 and Q2. These are still under development, so I can’t go into great detail, but I know that they will expand the reach of our products significantly and provide our customers with even greater flexibility in developing and implementing AI-powered enterprise applications.
We also aim to expand our relationships with major partners like Deloitte. This is a powerful way to deliver businesses the best in enterprise AI along with trusted, knowledgeable domain expertise that guides one’s strategy and/or technology operations.
A parting thought on your most memorable moment in tech and the learning that came from it!
Formally emerging from stealth last year was definitely an incredible moment for our company. Since that point, we have taken some big steps toward our goal of making AI accessible to professionals across different professions and industries. This means that not merely technical specialists, but professionals across all verticals–including sales, HR, legal, marketing and more–can have advanced, low/no code AI at their disposal. After such an exciting and growth-filled year, I can’t wait to see what the future holds.
Blackswan Technologies is a PaaS/SaaS product company. Its Flagship software ELEMENT is an operating system powering the rapid development of enterprise AI applications that mimic the cognitive functions of human intelligence. ELEMENT can be used by enterprises across multiple industries to collect and organise data, gain competitive intelligence, improve compliance, drive new business opportunities and make predictions – all while cutting costs and improving efficiencies. BlackSwan’s ELEMENT is trusted by some of the largest global organisations. Blackswan Technologies is based in London, England with offices in the United States, Israel, Poland and Germany.
Michael Ouliel is the founder and CEO of enterprise AI company BlackSwan Technologies and has been an active leader in the technology sector for more than 20 years. Blackswan Technologies is based in London, England with offices in the United States, Israel, Poland and Germany.
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